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The following are answers to common questions in the Microsoft FrontPage Client Newsgroup:


There are several varieties of this question...

  • Which is better, NT or Unix?
  • Which is more reliable, NT or Unix?
  • Which works better with FrontPage, NT or Unix?

Database Capability

There are many databases available for NT and Unix. 

FrontPage makes working with Databases on NT easier for the developer because most of the development is point and click, and the developer can use Microsoft tools and products they are used to using day in and day out.

Some caveats... it is our belief that most developers working with Windows 9x and NT will default to using Microsoft Access due to availability, price, ease of use and other reasons.  This decision usually causes problems down the road as Microsoft Access, per Microsoft Corporation, tends only handle no more than 40 concurrent users at any one moment in time.

Microsoft SQL Server (only works on NT) and many of the Unix database servers do not have these limitations.

Ecommerce (shopping on the web) Capability

There are a growing number of FrontPage add ons for Windows 9x and NT that make store front and shopping cart creation and maintenance a breeze.

The only caution I advise in this area is to look at the features and functionality's of the store front and shopping cart from the point of view of the shopper.

What might be an easier tool for the developer may not create the best shopping experience for the buyer.

FrontPage Server Extensions

FrontPage Server Extensions are available for both platforms, and work well with both platforms.

NT Only:  IDC/HTX, ASP, and connectivity to Microsoft Access, Visual FoxPro, and Microsoft SQL Server are proprietary to Windows 9x and NT.

Unix Only:  The FrontPage registration bot, using Tools & Permissions to assign Users and Passwords do not work on Windows NT servers.  The Tools, Permissions' ability to add new users does not function on NT-based servers.

Investment Issues

Industry average rates for hosting on Unix are often less of an investment than hosting on NT.  This is due mainly to economies of scale.  A Sun Ultra 1/170 can host up to 512 domains where a good NT machine can host anywhere from 40 to no more than 100 domains (any more would have severe impact on reliability and performance).


To date Unix continues to prove to be the most reliable operating system available in terms of web servers.  It is not uncommon for Unix servers to have an up time (time since last reboot) of up to two years.

http://www.15seconds.com/, a respected NT resource site, did a survey of NT hosting companies.  One of the questions was how often they had to reboot their NT hosting servers.  The most common answers fell into two categories:  reboot once per day, and reboot once per week.

While there are many hosting companies that reported only having to reboot once to twice per month, the majority fell into the rebooting once per day to once per week.


Unix was built from the ground up to be a multi-tasking, multi-operations operating system.  NT is slowly growing in this direction.

Most Unix servers are 64-bit, while all NT servers today are 32-bit.

Between these two factors, Unix is often a leaner and meaner fighting machine in terms of performance.

Peter Abraham

Direct Email Marketing with Constant Contact

Dynamic Net, Inc.

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Last updated: Thursday November 16, 2006 18:22 -0500